June 19, 2019

Showing The Prominence Of Cyber Defense, Cisco To Buy Cybersecurity Company SourceFire For $2.7 Billion

At the end of July 2013, Cisco Systems agreed to buy Sourcefire, a key provider of cybersecurity services, for about $2.7 billion in cash. Reported in The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, the acquisition reflects the growing fervor for cyber defense and the rising value of companies that can help guard against computer-based attacks. As a major Orange County provider of IT solutions and cybersecurity, Zephyr Networks  believes the efforts of major players in the technological industry to provide cybersecurity is only just beginning. Unlike the corporate giants, however, Zephyr Networks is able to deliver IT solutions and cybersecurity to small to mid-sized Orange County businesses with a desire to connect with the human face of their cyber defense.

Cybersecurity Equals Big Business

Under the terms of the mega deal, Cisco will pay $76 a share in cash, nearly 30 percent higher than Sourcefire’s closing price on Monday. The offer includes retention-based incentives for Sourcefire’s executives. Founded in 2001, Sourcefire has grown into a major cybersecurity provider. In 2012, the company reported $5 million in profit on revenue $223.1 million. Shares in Sourcefire climbed about 29 percent in premarket trading, to $76.40, over the deal price, in a potential sign that investors might be expecting a bidding war. After all, quality cybersecurity providers on the level of Sourcefire are few and far between, and there might be other bidders coming to the table.

cybersecurity, cyber defense, it solutions

Sourcefire & The Importance of Cybersecurity

In a statement, Cisco said that adding Sourcefire would take it’s portfolio of security offerings to the next-generation of excellence. “Buy has always been a key part of our build-buy-partner innovation strategy,” said Hilton Romanski, a Cisco vice president for corporate development. “Sourcefire aligns well with Cisco’s future vision for security and supports the key pillars of our security strategy.” Without question, the acquisition of Sourcefire is symbolic of the primary role that Cyber Defense has ascended to in the arena of business, technology and security.

Zephyr Networks & Affordable Cybersecurity

The focus of the work of Zephyr Networks  the IT stability and cybersecurity of our client company. If you want to find out how our IT solutions can help your company and ensure your cybersecurity , please contact Zephyr Networks today. To learn more about cybersecurity strategies that are affordable and actually work, call Zephyr toll free at (800) 884-7559 or fill out our handy contact form.


The United States And Japan Hold Bilateral Cyber Dialogue Conference On Cyber Security

In May of 2013, the United States and Japan held their first ever bilateral talks on cyber security and cyber defense. The focus of the Tokyo conference was the prevention malicious and intentional cyber attacks and data breaches. The genesis of the conference between the United States and Japan were the cyber attacks and data breaches by government-sponsored hackers traced back to China. Zephyr Networks fully supports such international efforts by states to address questions of cyber security and cyber defense.

Cyber Security, cyber defense, cyber dialogue

Cyber Security Leads To Bilateral Conference

Both the United States and Japan view such cyber attacks, including, hacking and the use of viruses, as a growing threat to national security. Being state-sponsored in China, the cyber attacks are becoming more and more sophisticated, demanding greater measures to ensure cyber security. The two-nation conference came in the wake of a report by the US Pentagon accusing China of cyber spying against the American government. Beijing naturally denies the allegations, saying it’s impossible to tell where the attacks originated.

Joint Statement From Cyber Security Conference

Here is an excerpt from the joint statement after the conference:

The U.S.-Japan Cyber Dialogue deepened bilateral cooperation on a wide range of cyber issues and strengthened the U.S.-Japan Alliance by:

  • Exchanging information on cyber issues of mutual concern and discussing possible cooperative measures.
  • Affirming common objectives in international cyber fora, especially the application of norms of responsible state behavior in cyberspace.
  • Supporting the development of practical confidence-building measures and the implementation of national whole-of-government cyber strategies in an effort to reduce risk in cyberspace.
  • Confirming support for the preservation of openness and interoperability enhanced by the multi-stakeholder system of Internet governance.
  • Coordinating cooperation on cyber capacity-building efforts in third countries.
  • Identifying actions governments and private sector entities can take to secure critical infrastructure.
  • Addressing the increasing role of cyber defense in national defense and security strategies and discussing new areas of bilateral cyber defense cooperation.

If Japan and the United States are able to turn these common objectives and goals into actual reality, Zephyr Networks believes the Cyber Dialogue Conference produced some real value. It will take time to see what happens, but without question as the hackers get more sophisticated, cyber security experts must do the same. If you want to learn more about how we can help your company with cyber security, please call Zephyr Networks toll free at (800) 884-7559 or fill out our handy contact form.


Zephyr Networks Supports The Launch Of The California Cybersecurity Taskforce To Address Cyber Defense

Zephyr Networks supports the official launch on  May 13 of the California Cybersecurity Taskforce.  California government officials and private-sector leaders came together to discuss a comprehensive cybersecurity plan for the state. This was the official launch of the California Cybersecurity Task Force, the first state-led collaboration of its kind. Because of the interconnectedness of government and private-sector IT assets, collaboration has become crucial, said Michele Robinson, acting director for the Office of Information Security. The ultimate goal is to collaborate and work together to improve cybersecurity for the state.

The meeting allowed discussion on several topics, all with the goal of establishing a framework and overall plan for statewide cybersecurity. Among the topics discussed were information sharing between governments and the private sector; challenges to industry, such as the need for improved laws and regulations; and the need for increased cybersecurity research and education. Among the meetings participants were officials from the National Fusion Center Association (NFCA), the FBI, the Sacramento Utility District, Cyber Watch West (CWW), and private companies such as Verizon, Bank of America and Symantec.

california cybersecurity

California Cybersecurity Taskforce

State CIO Carlos Ramos said one of the California Technology Agency’s biggest goals with respect to this effort will be improving the awareness of the importance of focusing on cybersecurity. Whether it’s hactivists, state-sponsored cyberattacks, cyber-terrorism, espionage or just opportunistic hackers, he said, attacks on government are on the rise — which a  2013 report released by Verizon also found. Private industry, local government, state government, financial organizations and even the federal government stand to benefit from the collaboration that will take place through the collaboration of the public and private sectors in the California Cybersecurity Taskforce.

By being proactive, Ramos  says the state will have a better chance at staying ahead of the curve in the never-ending battle of network security. “California really is out in front of other states,” Ramos said. “We’ve seen a number of areas, particularly in technology, where governments tend to follow our lead. I am quite hopeful, from that perspective — the framework and the work that we do here — that other states will take and emulate and put in place across the country.”

Zephyr Networks completely supports te launch of the California Cybersecurity Task Force with an understanding that such a task force will focus on the larger problems of the state and major institutions, both public and private. When it comes to the cybersecurity challenges of small to mid-sized businesses in Southern California, your best bet is to contact a company like Zephyr Networks for help. To learn more about how Zephyr Networks can improve the cybersecurity of your company, please call us toll free at (800) 884-7559 or fill out our handy contact form.


If IT Professionals Doubt The Cyber Security Of Their Large Companies, How Can Your Small To Mid-Sized Business Protect Its Valuable Data?

The cyber defense and cyber security of their own companies are not respected by a majority of IT professionals. Zephyr Networks was not surprised when it was revealed that IT Security Professionals do not have faith in the cyber security of their own companies. A survey conducted recently revealed that more than 70% of IT security professionals would not be willing to bet $100 of their own money that their companies will not suffer a data breach in the next six months.

Carried out in February at RSA Conference 2013, the survey measured the attitudes of nearly 250 IT security professionals and the way their organizations manage cyber security. Nearly 50% of respondents work in organizations with more than 1,000 people. What was astounding is that the study revealed that a third of organizations do not have a policy making it compulsory to change default passwords when deploying new hardware, applications and network appliances to the corporate network.

Cyber Security Under Siege All Over

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Is Your Cyber Security Under Siege?

What bothers Zephyr Networks is if this is the cyber security perspective of IT security professionals at mostly large, well-funded companies with over 1,000 employees. If that is the case, what is the cyber security situation like for small to mid-sized businesses in America? While vendors of conventional security products like firewalls and anti-virus software are constantly updating their tools to reactively protect against the latest threats, hackers are looking for flaws. As this is being written, a hacker somewhere is engineering a new attack to exploit the latest updates.

The reality is that 100% protection is nearly impossible to achieve, particularly by professionals caught in the bureaucratic web of a company. Zephyr Networks knows, however, that best practices for securing access to critical systems and data are readily available if you work with an external network security provider. The key of working with a company like Zephyr Networks is providing your network security with the expertise and experience of an external eye.

Password Protection For Your Company

If you are worried about the cyber security and the cyber defense of your company, please contact Zephyr Networks today. When it comes to ensuring and maintaining your network security, we are your solution. To learn more about how we can protect your company, call Zephyr toll free at (800) 884-7559 or fill out our handy contact form.

2013 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report Reveals Increased Need For Network Security And Cyber Defense

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Network Security & Verizon Data Breach Report

The focus of the 2013 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report is you should know how your network security is vulnerable to data breaches by knowing your enemy. In order to know your enemy, you have to know yourself first and your vulnerabilities. Zephyr Networks found the  2013 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report to be a treasure-trove of data that underscores the importance of organizational self-analysis in determining what attackers want and how they are likely to go after it. The problem is that self-analysis is difficult when your staff is caught in the web of your business and its bureaucracy. Such a perspective reinforces the need to work with an outside provider like Zephyr Networks to protect your business

Verizon Data Breach Report Informs Network Security

The report is Verizon’s annual analysis of data breaches and breach investigations conducted in the previous year. In addition to Verizon’s own data, this year’s Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR) includes breach incident data from 18 other organizations around the world (see below), including more than a dozen first-time contributors. Prior to analysis, Verizon once again standardized its breach dataset, this year encompassing 621 breach events and more than 44 million compromised records, using its VERIS incident-sharing framework.

Data points in the 2013 DBIR indicate clear patterns in the motives and methods adversaries used for successful data breaches. Of the 92% of breaches in this year’s data set that were caused by external threat actors, Verizon tied more than half (55%) to purely profit-driven organized criminal groups. According to Verizon, these profit-driven adversaries are most interested in companies in the finance, retail and food services industries, and their attacks most often originate from countries in Eastern Europe or North America. Not surprisingly, attackers seeking immediate profit favor payment data and personal information.

What is even scarier from the perspective of Zephyr Networks is that the focus of data breaches is not what most people expect. Small to mid-sized companies are more likely to be the victims of such attacks than major organizations. The difference is that any successful attack on a major organization receives a lot of external publicity as news. The truth is that cyber-espionage-related data breaches among companies with fewer than 10,000 employees happened more frequently than at larger firms by an 81-to-19 ratio.

Small To Mid-Sized Companies In Data Breach Danger

Kyle Maxwell, senior analyst with Verizon, explained: “Small attorney firms or professional services firms are getting compromised because they have sensitive data on clients. So rather than try to breach a large, well-defended network, it’s easier just to compromise the outside counsel or auditing firm, and get financials statements or plans for M&As [mergers and acquisitions] or other trade secrets from those firms . . .. Organizations can’t take a one-size-fits-all approach to their defenses; different types of attackers use different methods. Organizations of all sizes and all sectors need to understand their threats and plan accordingly rather than assume they can set up static defenses that’ll work for everything.”

A new twist in this year’s DBIR is the inclusion of more than 47,000 reported network security incidents, yet Verizon carefully delineated data points from that larger data set from those drawn from confirmed data breaches. Despite Verizon’s efforts to improve how it quantifies breach data, perhaps the most frightening data point in the entire report involves organizations’ inability to quantify data loss. According to Verizon, of the breach events comprising its data set, organizations had a complete and reliable count of compromised records only 15% of the time. In other words, in 85% of breach incidents, the organizations could not determine the full extent of the breach. Alexander said Verizon’s findings highlight how important it is for organizations to conduct a baseline inventory of sensitive data. It is essential to be able to discover what’s missing or what has been tampered with in the wake of a network security or data breach incident.

Zephyr Networks is grateful for the quality and precision of the 2013 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report. Such a report helps us know how to provide better cyber defense and network security services to our clients. If you are worried about the network security and the cyber defense of your company, please contact Zephyr Networks today. When it comes to ensuring and maintaining your network security, we are your solution. To learn more about how we can protect your company, call Zephyr toll free at (800) 884-7559 or fill out our handy contact form.



The following organizations contributed breach incident data to the 2013 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report.

First-time contributors are denoted with an asterisk.

Australian Federal Police (AFP)
*CERT Insider Threat Center at the Carnegie Mellon University Software Engineering Institute
*Consortium for Cybersecurity Action (CSIS control mapping)
*Danish Ministry of Defence, Center for Cybersecurity
*Danish National Police, NITES (National IT Investigation Section)
Dutch Police: National High Tech Crime Unit (NHTCU)
*Electricity Sector Information Sharing and Analysis Center (ES-ISAC)
*European Cyber Crime Center (EC3)
*G-C Partners, LLC
*Guardia Civil (Cybercrime Central Unit)
*Industrial Control Systems Cyber Emergency Response Team (ICS-CERT)
Irish Reporting and Information Security Service (IRISS-CERT)
*Malaysia Computer Emergency Response Team (MyCERT), CyberSecurity Malaysia
*National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center (NCCIC)
*U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT)
U.S. Secret Service




The Twitter Hack Of The Associated Press And Possible Network Security Threats To Your Company

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Network Security Threats & Social Networking

Revealing the network security threats presented by social networking, Zephyr Networks was not surprised when Twitter experienced a serious security problem on April 23, 2013. Stocks plunged sharply after a hacker accessed the AP newswire’s account and tweeted about a false White House emergency. The shocking tweet came from the Associated Press earlier this afternoon: “Two Explosions in the White House and Barack Obama is injured.” The AP’s communications team quickly tweeted from its own account that the main AP Twitter was compromised, but investors had already panicked. The Dow Jones industrial average immediately plunged by more than 140 points.

A Compromised Twitter & Network Security Threats

After years of hacks that typically involved little more than obscene language, Twitter’s sub-par security measures have now caused serious real-world consequences and revealed a new form of network security threats. What is even more important is the threat that Twitter brings to your own company, increasing  network security threats. Are the Twitter accounts of your company secure? Are the social networking activities of your employees a possible confidentiality threat to your business?

Many hacks happen when account owners use guessable passwords or access Twitter over public Wi-Fi and shared computers. If one person who tweets from a corporate account loses his or her phone, an entire corporation’s Twitter account could be at risk. While Twitter can’t control those issues, Zephyr Networks wants to point out that our network security threats team addresses such issues once we are hired to protect your company.

Security experts have called on Twitter for years to beef up its security using simple methods: Sharply limit the login attempts allowed from a single IP address. Let only one person access a Twitter account at a given time. Ideally, Twitter would employ a “two-factor authentication” login method. It’s a basic security tool already used by Google, Facebook and Dropbox that requires both a password and a piece of data, such as numbers sent via text message.

Network Security Threats & Twitter Hacks All Too Common

What is so frightening to Zephyr Networks is that the Associated Press hack was not an isolated case of Twitter hacks and network security threats. The Twitter accounts of CBS’ 60 Minutes and 48 Hours were compromised over the weekend. In July 2011, News Corp.’s Fox News account — followed by more than 2 million people — was hacked in and tweeted that President Obama had been assassinated. Comcast’s NBC News account was also compromised two months later, falsely tweeting that a plane had crashed into the Ground Zero area of Manhattan.

It is unclear what, if anything, Twitter plans to change. As always happens after a hack, a company spokesman said the typical blank response, “We don’t comment on individual accounts for privacy and security reasons.” As a result, Twitter has put the onus on brands to ensure they’re being smart about choosing and sharing passwords. Following all these hacks, Twitter tweeted a link to a “friendly reminder about password security.” Thank you very much, but Zephyr Networks knows that your company needs more than a mere link to protect your company against the network security threats created by social networking.

Twitter can tweet about best practices all it wants, but that approach clearly is not working and will not protect your company. If you are worried about the network security and the cyber defense of your company, please contact Zephyr Networks today. When it comes to ensuring and maintaining your network security, we are your solution. To learn more about how we can protect your company, call Zephyr toll free at (800) 884-7559 or fill out our handy contact form.